Associate Dean of Education and Professor of Special Education
University Professor of Economics
Accustomed to teaching courses in his specialty, economics professor Dr. Walton Padelford was surprised when several years ago he was asked to teach a course in business ethics. Little did he know at the time that this new teaching venture would afford him the opportunity to cultivate his interest in and appreciation for the life and works of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and result, ultimately, in the writing of his recently released book Bonhoeffer and Business Ethics.
While teaching business ethics, Padelford realized that the established method of case study analysis and examination of standard ethics works would be enhanced if viewed through the eyes of faith. Acknowledging that his own teaching did not reflect the unique contribution of Christianity to ethics, Padelford redesigned his course to include Bonhoeffer's seminal work Ethics. Having incorporated Bonhoeffer's theories into his teaching, Padelford hopes that his students will be encouraged to be real disciples of Christ in the workplace, seeing their jobs as a place of sanctification.
When asked what advice he would give faculty regarding the relationship between their scholarly interests and their teaching, Padelford stressed the importance of staying involved in your discipline through reading and staying involved in discipleship. Eventually the two may come together and present a good writing opportunity. Padelford also encourages faculty to find a fellow scholar who can provide a fresh perspective and serve as a sounding board. For him, his former student and now colleague Landon Preston served in this capacity.
Bonhoeffer and Business Ethics was published by BorderStone Press and is available at Amazon.com and at the LifeWay store on campus.